From mopeds to tuk tuks and buses there are plenty of affordable ways to island hop and compare the beaches of Thailand. Here's a roundup of how it all works so that you can explore the country at your leisure.
Through the sky
The majority of international airports provide chartered flights into Bangkok. This flight itself will be the largest expense of your trip as Thailand's own transport offers options for everyone from budget backpackers to luxury honeymooners. The city of Bangkok itself is also a good base for your first few days in Thailand, allowing you to adjust to the time difference, find your feet and enjoy the buzz of city life.
Negotiating the land
A range of buses, taxis and of course those famous tuk tuks allow much of Thailand to be covered by land. Haggling, or negotiating, is very much part of Thai culture and this applies to transport too. You can easily hail a tuk tuk in the street. To get the most out of your journey you should agree the price with the driver before you get in the vehicle.
Buses come in all shapes and sizes from local services to those geared more towards tourists. Each can usually be booked via your accommodation provider, online or in person at the bus station. Depending on your destination, travelling by bus usually allows you to go far although you may have to make the odd connection. If you're not short on time then stock up on snacks, sit back and relax on the bus!
On the tracks and sailing the seas
If you're on a shorter timescale, seeking to cover a lot of ground quickly, or looking out for the environment then Thailand's train system offers a great alternative to flying. With routes to hotspots such as Chiang Mai and Penang, travelling by train is an efficient option for Thailand holidays. You can even enjoy a Thai meal on a number of trains or opt for an overnight sleeper train, meaning you won't miss a beat. Train timetables also compliment the ferry system, so you can hop on a train straight from Bangkok before picking up a ferry to the beautiful Koh Tao. The riverboat system also runs within cities themselves and between islands, and that means you can pack in as many beaches as your heart desires.
Make the most of your adventure and explore the markets, nightlife and activities that Thailand has waiting for you. Whether you prefer to travel by land or sea, there are comfortable, convenient options that'll get you from A to B in no time.
Images by loekzanders, northways, ironypoisoning, jo.sau and prufrock27, used under Creative Commons license.